Ashley Jensen as DI Ruth Calder in Shetland

Ashley Jensen, who plays DI Ruth Calder, ‘doesn’t know if there’ll be another series of Shetland’

Not good news for fans...

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Scottish actress Ashley Jensen has cast doubt on the future of Shetland, admitting she hasn’t heard anything about a possible series 9.

Ashley, 54, joined the cast of the popular BBC One crime drama this month in series 8. Fans will know that she replaced the former leading actor Douglas Henshall, who had played DI Jimmy Perez ever since the show started in 2013.

While fans were gutted about Perez’s departure, Ashley’s character DI Ruth Calder has proved she’s more than just a shoddy replica. Far from it, in fact, ED! loves her in the role.

So it sucks to hear she might only be around for one series. Here’s everything Ashley Jensen revealed about her role in Shetland.

Ashley Jensen on Graham Norton's sofa
Ashley Jensen discusses Shetland series 9 on The Graham Norton Show (Credit: PA Media/Ian West)

Shetland star Ashley Jensen appears on The Graham Norton Show

This week (Friday, November 10, 2023), Graham Norton welcomes hip-hop star Sean ‘Diddy’ Combs, Shetland actor Ashley Jensen, 1917 star George MacKay, and TV couple Chris and Rosie Ramsey. Jessie Ware performs on the show.

Diddy talks about his new R&B release, The Love Album: Off the Grid, his first album in 13 years. He also explains his various name changes, including why he now likes to be called Love.

Meanwhile, George MacKay plugs his erotic revenge thriller Femme, and explains how his onscreen neck tattoos spilled into real life. He said: “They lasted for about three days, so I had to wear them out. I was on my way to work in a cab and a fight broke out between two moped riders. I got out and helped break it up. When they saw my tattoos, they backed down.”

Chris and Rosie Ramsey discuss the success of their hit podcast Shagged. Married. Annoyed. And Jessie Ware performs Hello Love live in the studio.

Ashley Jensen on Graham Norton's sofa
Ashley Jensen has NOT been asked to film another series of Shetland yet (Credit: PA Media/Ian West)

Will there be a series 9 of Shetland?

Ashley, who appears to be wearing an engagement ring on the BBC One show, talks publicly for the first time since her long-awaited appearance in Shetland.

Opening up about her new lead role in the hit crime show, she admits she doesn’t know if her character will be returning after the current series ends.

She says: “I have no idea how it will continue. I don’t know if there will be another after it. So I just literally treated it as a six-part series.”

Ashley also admitted that she tried not to think too much about the pressure of taking over from fellow Scot Douglas Henshall.

She added: “I didn’t think about the series before because if you start comparing yourself to someone who’s done seven seasons of it, you’ll end up tying yourself in knots and worrying your brain about it.”

Talking about the island of Shetland itself, she reveals: “It got this almost strange mythical quality about it. It’s a startling landscape that doesn’t feel real – it’s stark, bleak, and beautiful all at the same time.”

ED! has contacted BBC One for confirmation on the future of the BBC show Shetland. A spokesperson says there isn’t any news on Shetland series 9 yet. So watch this space!

Read more: First look: Shetland favourite Douglas Henshall looks totally different in Agatha Christie’s Murder is Easy

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The Graham Norton Show airs on Friday, November 10 2023, at 10.40pm on BBC One

Would you like Shetland to return for a series 9? Leave us a comment on our Facebook page @EntertainmentDailyFix.

Helen Fear
TV Editor